Nestled along the airy streets of Homer Street, Edgware Road, lies a little brick-lined pocket of Italian mastery. From a country quite literally shaped as a boot, Italy is matchless for its reputation of style, art and decorum. But most of all, and what honestly makes me happier than any man will ever make me, is the food. Briciole, a café/delicatessen, captures all the strands of Italian delicacy, and me and Kinga had the chance to take a peak into its adorable doors (I mean, look at the mascots! The bread looks like me before I started my uni degree.).
The ambiance of the place was tranquil, to say the least. Its rustic exterior, with but the faint glow of a nearby street lamp all to illuminate the sign, housed an equally worn-down inside. Furnished with baskets of vibrant produce, the restaurant has a small seating area that hides a spacious alcove dining area. The wooden paneling reflected a warmly atmosphere, with the ivy draping along the walls, hanging loosely against the sketchy paintings of Italian ingredients.
After chatting away in the cozy room, which stands alongside a more intimate, private dining area, me and Kinda finally began our little journey through the Italian streets. For our starters, we dipped into the restaurants bakery, with each of their savory confections were so beguiling. I've never tried brochette before, so Kinga persuaded me to try it; I have no regrets! The Sicillian cherry tomatoes were plump and juicy, the basil sealing the raw flavors of the piquant bread.
We dipped our bread into this amazing cheese. I love cheese, I mean, love, cheese. Maybe a little too much... When ordering the Burrata Pugliese, my bar was high, and the silky cow's milk mozzarella, filled with cream from the isle of Puglia, was divine. The plump confluence of creamy tastes was mellow at first before the cheesy bounty inside was released. I had to resist all urges to propose to it on the spot, I needed that cheesy coruncopia more in my life than Ariana Grande needed that haircut.
For the main course, Briciole offer a wide variety of both traditiona, and contemporary Italian dishes. My eyes were instantly drawn to the pasta, or more specifically, the Ravioli filled with ewe’s cheese and black truffle. Being a university student, pasta is my specialty. Looking at this ambrosial delight was a gift from the Italian Gods, its balsamic tang was creamy, the juices contained in the ravioli flowing with ewe's cheese was crisp in taste.
Kinga chose to go for the meatier road of the Italian cross-section. Her chicken supreme was cooked to absolute perfection. Flavorsome and lightly seasoned, the accompanying side dish of roast potatoes with rosemary, and buxom cherry tomatoes (always welcome to make a comeback) were heavenly. I loved how vibrant the colours of the vegetables and fruit were, you could really tell how freshly picked the produce was.
Within this sugary, winter wonderland led a chocolatey mound of dulcet delights. Me and Kinga both caved in and got the warm chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream. Give Marilyn Monroe the memo, chocolate, not diamonds, are a girls best friend. Saccharine ice cream trickled down the spongey texture of the cake, and its small price tag meant that I'd happily come back for seconds or sevenths. Definitely make that sevenths for me,
I also got an equally choclatey drink to go with the desert. I went for Whisky Chocolate. The small shot was chockablock with flavor, being thick and syrupy. Alcohol and chocolate... you can stop the search Lizzie McGuire, this is what dreams are made of.
After indulging in some toothsome deserts, we had some coffee. Don't judge (if you do, just do it internally) as a fashion blogger, it was my legal obligation to try the coffee! We tried the Moka Italiano, brewed in a traditional moka pot. The coffee was strong and earthy, the aroma alone left a musky taste in the mouth. Sipping on the red cup, soaking in the bustling ambiance and watching the hours pass by, it really hit me how versatile the place is. In a relatively small space, it housed a cafe, bakery and kitchen. You could have a three-course meal, or just pop in for a cup or two.
Simply made, simply designed, simply executed. Briciole place the focus on the flavor, being unpretentious and very reasonably priced; when this is coming from a university student, you know it's true, folks. The service is on a level on its own. with the waiters being tenderly attentive, not to a degree where it is distant, nor to one that is smothering.
The punchy flavors on the trattoria menu come at a low price, and with supple service and a rustic look, Briciole achieves the incredulous art of balance. If you see me and I've gained 10 pounds, you'll know why...
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